Running SpellCheck

The Office SpellCheck feature checks your data for spelling errors. Office applications share a common dictionary file. That means that if you make a change from Access (for example, adding a word that's not in the default dictionary), your changes will be available in the other Office applicationsand vice versa. When Access encounters a word it can't find in the dictionary, it alerts you and when available, provides a few alternate spellings for the word.

You can use SpellCheck in a table, query, or form by selecting Spelling from the Tools menu or pressing F7. If you find the option disabled, you can't use it in the current object.

Using SpellCheck

Chances are you're familiar with the SpellCheck feature. If not, work through the following example. First, open the Plants database:

  1. Press F11 to display the Database window.

  2. Click the Tables shortcut and double-click Catalogs to open that table.

  3. Choose Spelling from the Tools menu or press F7 . SpellCheck begins the process of looking for words it can't match in its dictionary.

  4. As you can see in Figure 17.3, SpellCheck stops at Raintree in the second record. At this point, you have several options. For now, click Ignore because you don't want to change the name of the catalog.

    Figure 17.3. Run the SpellCheck feature.


  5. The next word highlighted is Richters. Again, you don't want to change the catalog's name, so click Ignore . In fact you won't want to change any of the words SpellCheck finds in this example, so continue to click Ignore until SpellCheck completes its check of the Name field.

  6. Click OK when SpellCheck displays the informational message that the spelling check is complete.

You may have noticed that SpellCheck only considered the current fieldthe Name field. That's because you're in a table, and SpellCheck only considers one field at a time. Simply select a field by clicking its heading cell and press F7 to check the contents of that field.

In step 4 above, you found that SpellCheck offered several options, which you didn't use. Although the plants database doesn't contain any misspelled words, it's easy enough to improvise so you can experience a few of the other options this feature has to offer. Are you ready to try again?

  1. Open the Plants table, select the LatinName field and press F7 . This time SpellCheck stops at Rubdeckia and suggests Rebecca, as shown in Figure 17.4.

    Figure 17.4. SpellCheck stops at the first word it can't find in the dictionary.


  2. SpellCheck offers only one suggestion for replacing RudbeckiaRebecca. To make the switch, click Change or press Alt+C.

  3. SpellCheck changes the encountered word to the suggested spelling and then highlights the next word it can't find in the dictionary, as shown in Figure 17.5

    Figure 17.5. SpellCheck replaces the word with the alternate spelling and moves on.


  4. You don't really want to replace Rudbeckia, so press Escape and then press Ctrl+Z.

There are a few other possibilities. Clicking the Add button will copy the word to the dictionary. That way, SpellCheck won't stop at the word again. This is a useful option when working with unusually spelled or uncommon names and terms. The word may be spelled correctly, but unless it's in the dictionary, there's no way for SpellCheck to know. That means SpellCheck will continue to stop every time it encounters the word, until you add the word to the dictionary.

If the word occurs several times, but you don't want to add it to the dictionary, Ignore All might be a better choice. The Ignore All option will bypass any other occurrences of the word within the current document, even though it isn't in the dictionary.

Similarly, the Change All option will update all occurrences of a word in the current document. That way you don't have to individually change each one. You'll find information about the AutoCorrect option in the "About AutoCorrect" section later in this chapter.

The Options button displays another set of conditions you can apply to the search. These options are beyond the scope of this book.



Selecting a field before engaging the SpellCheck feature forces SpellCheck to check every entry in the field. To check just one entry, select that entry or click inside that particular field and press F7.



If you happen to be reviewing data that's not in the current language (which will probably be U.S. English for most of you), you can select an alternate dictionary file. Simply select the appropriate dictionary from the Dictionary Language drop-down list.



SpellCheck will also check your grammar. Simply select the Check Grammar option (see Figure 17.5). It's selected by default. When this option is selected, SpellCheck will note broken grammar rules and make suggestions.

Absolute Beginner's Guide to Microsoft Office Access 2003
Absolute Beginners Guide to Microsoft Office Access 2003
ISBN: 0789729407
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2002
Pages: 124

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